When John Kerry, America’s new secretary of state, sits down to breakfast with David Cameron this morning, one overriding question will hang unanswered above the teapots and the toast racks. It is one too delicate to ask, but too important to ignore: after a first Barack Obama term marked by conspicuous US foreign policy disengagement, does the appointment of Mr Kerry herald significant change?[Snip]Despite the pomp and circumstance laid on during his visit to Washington last year, British diplomats complain of a “transactional” relationship with Obama’s White House--most recently seen in its refusal to recognise next month’s referendum on independence
Comments: The Falkland Islands referendum is a definite sticking point.
What we know about Kerry is - he gave aid and comfort to the communist Vietcong and the communist Sandinistas, he supports Heinz ketchup, and he displayed exquisite judgment in his pick of the John Edwards for VP. No doubt our allies look forward to more magnificence from John Kerry. That Obama choose the disgraced Kerry from hundreds of more qualified candidates, says all we need to know about Obama´s intentions.
Being from the UK, I wondered if they were using ´head´ as another name for the terlet (toilet). If so, wouldn´t that just be rich. Not sure if ´head´ is from the military or where but I know I´ve heard it used that way.
Not trying to be snarky here, but in recent pictures I´ve noticed Jon F´n´s face looks like about 3" has been added to his jawbones. He certainly looks different than he did some years ago. Maybe his face is still growing? Isn´t there a disease that causes that? I´m being serious. Have you also noticed it?
Sorry for another post--it´s been over 50 years since I was in the school milieu and I´ve been digging among the cobwebs.
Now that I think of it, the head boys and girls were often goody two-shoes types. Never stepped out of line, got good grades, shined their shoes every day, that sort of thing. He was probably captain of the cricket team, she was probably hockey captain. They toed the line and kissed butt, in other words. And, like Hillary Clinton (who turned in girls smoking in the restrooms), they were tattle-tales. In later life they probably would have been the sort of people who took credit for what others did.
Scotland Yard said the men were arrested under the Terrorism Act 2000 on suspicion of the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism. Armed officers were deployed in the pre-planned intelligence-led operation because it was feared the men may have had access to weapons, the Daily Telegraph understands. The men had been under surveillance by police and MI5 for some time. They have all been taken to a south London police station, while six addresses across the capital are being searched, a force spokesman said. Two men were arrested in Mansell Street, east London, one man was arrested at a premises in
The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) says gunmen have abducted six of its workers and one Red Crescent volunteer in north-west Syria. The aid agency has had no contact with the gunmen, an ICRC spokesman says. Earlier, Syrian state media said gunmen had opened fire on Red Cross staff travelling on the road between Sarmin and Saraqeb in Idlib province. [Snip] A convoy carrying six ICRC staff members and one Syrian Arab Red Crescent volunteer was intercepted by unidentified armed gunmen near the town of Saraqeb in Idlib province, ICRC spokeswoman Rima Kamal told the BBC.
The largest group in Syria´s opposition coalition says it will not take part in proposed peace negotiations in Geneva. Syrian National Council leader George Sabra said the group would pull out of the umbrella coalition if it took part in the talks. He said his faction would not negotiate with the Syrian government, adding that conditions for talks were not right while Syrians continued to suffer. The UN, US and Russia want the long-delayed talks to be held next month. Anger at international response - Mr Sabra told French news agency AFP that the Syrian National Council (SNC) "had taken
The Israeli army says it has discovered a tunnel running 1.7km (1 mile) from the Gaza Strip into Israel. The tunnel led from a house to a site close to a kibbutz, Ein Hashlosha, and could have been used to carry out attacks on civilians, a spokesman said. Israel has responded by halting the transfer of all construction materials to Gaza. Restrictions on the private sector were lifted last month. Gaza´s Hamas rulers accused Israel of "exaggerating things". By talking about the discovery of a tunnel, Israel was "trying to justify the blockade and the continuous aggression on the Gaza Strip," spokesman Sami
The Royal Marines have been forced to cancel their biggest amphibious landing for more than a decade after their French allies pulled out. The Navy had spent £1?million in fuel getting to the Red Sea when the operation was called off--and it cost another £1?million to reach the Gulf of Oman, where a new exercise was hastily arranged for the Marines. [Snip] Navy sources said the decision to cancel was taken by the French after a breakdown in relations over ‘administrational issues’. The Royal Marines are said to have responded furiously as Exercise Djibouti Lion had taken a year to
India was today beginning to sort through miles of wreckage after Cyclone Phailin roared ashore, flooding towns and villages and destroying tens of thousands of homes. But around 18 hours after the strongest storm to hit India in more than a decade made landfall in eastern Orissa state, officials said they knew of only seven fatalities--far less than many feared. Most of the deaths came from falling branches or collapsing buildings in the rains ahead of the cyclone, but it initially appears that the evacuation of more than 600,000 people saved many lives. [Snip] The storm washed away tens of thousands
The news media are engaged in a political argument about whether the purpose of journalism is to report the world as it is or to purvey an idealised view. You have probably noticed that we are engaged in a fight to the death over the future of the free press in Britain. But you may be under the mistaken impression that this is a war between politicians determined to protect their own behaviour from scrutiny, and journalists who want to run riot through any area of public or private life they choose. It may seem that this ruckus has very
It turns out that former President George W Bush´s heart procedure last August was much more serious than originally thought. Sources familiar with the president´s situation told the National Journal that if the blocked artery hadn´t been caught during a routine checkup on August 5, Mr Bush could have died. After discovering the blockage, the president was admitted the next morning to Texas Health Presbyterian where doctors inserted a stent which opened the artery. He was held overnight for observation and was soon after released. ´He was more than 95 per cent occluded,´ a source told the Journal. ´With a blockage like
Tommy Robinson, who dramatically quit the English Defence League this week, has vowed to help police tackle racism within the organsation and has apologised for causing fear among British Muslims. Mr Robinson, 30, said he would work with police to help them investigate racism in the organisation - known for its thuggish street protests and extremist followers. Mr Robinson, whose real name is Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, also said he was sorry for creating a ´us and them´ culture and for causing fear among British Muslims. When asked about his claim that ´every single Muslim´ was to blame for ´getting away´ with
Robust employment levels throughout the recession were partly caused by people with undeclared jobs coming clean due to the Coalition’s sanctions-based welfare schemes, Cabinet sources have suggested. Unemployment peaked at around 2.7?million in the autumn of 2011. Official figures next month are expected to show that more than 100,000 people who were told to carry out “mandatory work activity” or lose their benefits chose to stop claiming welfare. Some of those who fell out of the system have gone on to get new jobs. But ministers suspect that others were already working while claiming, and chose to continue working while giving up
More than 400,000 people in India have been evacuated as a massive cyclone sweeps through the Bay of Bengal towards the east coast. Cyclone Phailin, categorised as "very severe" by weather forecasters, is expected to hit Orissa and Andhra Pradesh states on Saturday evening. The Meteorological Department has predicted the storm will bring winds up to 220 km/h (136mph). A deadly super-cyclone in 1999 killed more than 10,000 people in Orissa. But officials say this time they are better prepared, the BBC´s Sanjoy Majumder in Delhi reports. However, the US Navy´s Joint Typhoon Warning Center in Hawaii is forecasting even stronger winds, predicting sustained speeds
Facebook is facing another backlash from users and privacy campaigners after announcing it is once again changing its privacy settings. Up until now Facebook let people hide their profiles in search results using the ´Who can look up your timeline by name?´ setting, but the social networking site is retiring this feature with almost immediate effect. The option was removed from the accounts of people who hadn´t enabled it last year, and Facebook has announced it is removing the feature from everyone else´s accounts starting from now. Sean Walsh, head of social media and content for Blue Claw told MailOnline: ´In a
The rights of a transgendered Colorado high school student are being put ahead of girls the boy harasses in the girls bathroom. A male student at Florence (CO) High School who claims to be transgendered has caused controversy by harassing female students in the girls room, but will not face any discipline – this despite vocal protests from the girls’ parents. ‘The boy’s rights as a transgender trump their daughters’ privacy rights,’ the school has told concerned parents, according to CBN. Unidentified because all involved are minors, the students are being threatened with removal from sports teams or even hate crime charges
Jen Senko is a filmmaker who watched in horror as her father slowly came to believe the extreme right-wing lies of Rush Limbaugh and other conservative media mavens. Now she’s making a documentary about it calledThe Brainwashing of My Dad. Senko’s first documentary, Road Map Warrior Women, won recognition with several festival awards. Her most recent film, The Vanishing City, co-directed with Fiore DeRosa, exposes the economic policies that have made New York a city for the rich. The Vanishing City won Best Feature Documentary in the Williamsburg International Film Festival, Best Short Documentary in the Harlem International Film Festival, and
On health care, the president´s pile of broken promises keeps getting higher. Consider this gem from Aug. 20, 2009: “Let´s be clear about the fact that nobody has proposed anything close to a government takeover of health care.” Well, yes, somebody did. President Obama is now well on his way to orchestrating the federal government´s takeover of Americans´ health care. Commandeering the resources of major federal departments, particularly the Department of Health and Human Services and the IRS, the administration and its allies in Congress have created numerous federal bureaus, commissions and programs and have issued thousands of pages of rules, regulations,
The Los Angeles Times headline said it all: "Rep. Paul Ryan Fails to Close Republican Divide." When this became Ryan´s job, or whether his now "controversial" Wall Street Journal op-ed was even an attempt at doing that, is anyone´s guess. But once again, Republicans have decided to cannibalize themselves viciously and needlessly instead of uniting over common goals. To be clear, the divide on the right isn´t over policy. No Republican I´ve met thinks Obamacare is good legislation. No one is suggesting capitulation on the debt ceiling. Everyone wants spending cuts, entitlement reform and deficit reduction. Where we´re divided is over tactics. Incidentally, Ryan
It’s a buyer’s market for President Barack Obama. With House and Senate Republicans preparing competing proposals to end the government shutdown and avert a default on the nation’s debt, Obama hasn’t shown any inclination to jump at the first offer. The plan House Republicans presented to the White House on Thursday night wasn’t enticing enough, and there is a sense in Washington that the GOP’s scramble to avoid further political pain from this latest fiscal crisis will give Obama plenty of opportunity to define the terms of a settlement. At this point, White House officials won’t even describe
Good morning. Over the past few days, I’ve met with Republicans and Democrats from both houses of Congress in an effort to reopen your government and remove the dangers of default from our economy. It’s a positive development that House Republicans have agreed on the need to avoid the economic consequences of not meeting our country’s commitments. Because once the debt ceiling is raised, and the shutdown is over, there’s a lot we can accomplish together. We’ve created seven and a half million new jobs in the past three and a half years. Now let’s create more. We’ve cut our deficits in half over
Boston – A possible glitch in a computer system upgrade was causing major problems nationwide with the Electronic Benefits Transfer System on Saturday, as a countless number of shoppers found themselves stranded at the register. Reports from around the country began pouring in around 9 a.m. on Saturday that customers’ EBT cards were not working in stores. The glitch, however, did not appear to be part of the government shutdown. At 2 p.m., an EBT customer service representative told CBS Boston that the system was currently down for a computer system upgrade. The representative said the glitch is affecting people
Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Mike Lee (R-Utah) and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R) attended a rally protesting the closure of the World War II Memorial, according to reports. The lawmakers and the former governor – and 2008 GOP vice-presidential nominee – joined a crowd that removed barricades at the memorial and chanted “tear down these walls,” according to Washington, D.C., radio station WTOP. (Snip) The presence of a Confederate flag at the protest, which later moved to the White House, sparked an uproar on Twitter.
Police officers in Los Angeles have long faced accusations of institutional racism, but now it appears their dogs may be unjustly discriminatory, too. A new report focusing on the Canine Special Detail of the LA Sherriff’s Department (LASD) has uncovered a vast increase in the number of minority individuals bitten by police dogs since 2004. And in the first six months of this year, every single victim of a bite by a LASD dog was African-American or Latino.The data was published in a new report by the Police Assessment Resource Centre (Parc), a Los Angeles-based non-profit organisation, devoted to “advancing effective
House Republicans were furious with Senate Republicans and President Obama on Saturday for trying to cut a debt ceiling deal that leaves them out in the cold. Members emerged from a conference meeting saying Obama had double-crossed them by breaking off talks in order to shop for a better deal from the Senate GOP. They said the deal, formulated by centrist Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine.), would never get House GOP approval. “They are trying to jam us with the Senate and we are not going to roll over and take that,” House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) said after a GOP
Elizabeth Smart is making the rounds, flogging her new book My Story (written with Congressman Chris Stewart). Smart is, of course, the beautiful Mormon girl who in 2002 at 14 years old was abducted for nine months by evil lunatic Brian David Mitchell and his wife. Then, miraculously, she was found and reunited with her family. Today, she’s married and says she “couldn’t be happier.” She does good work fighting human trafficking and speaking to sexual abuse survivors. I’ve always been kind of fascinated with Smart. (Snip) Her kidnappers dragged her around the country, chaining her up like an animal
WASHINGTON — In March, Henry Chao, the chief digital architect for the Obama administration’s new online insurance marketplace, told industry executives that he was deeply worried about the Web site’s debut. “Let’s just make sure it’s not a third-world experience,” he told them. Two weeks after the rollout, few would say his hopes were realized. For the past 12 days, a system costing more than $400 million and billed as a one-stop click-and-go hub for citizens seeking health insurance has thwarted the efforts of millions to simply log in. The growing national outcry has deeply embarrassed the White House, which